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Paul T

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Paul T last won the day on January 3

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  1. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    Cone denim is simply a different philosophy from some Japanese denim - not all by any means, some SDA denim is very similar. It has much more subtle slubbing - rather than exaggerated.
  2. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    Interesting possibility, real life imitating the myth. There are a huge number of Toyoda looms still in Japan though, so it might not be cost-effective considering the shipping. Those looms are in demand for weaving carbon fibre for use in the aerospace industry, too.
  3. Roy. (expurgated edition)

    It is such awful news. Obviously Roy and LVC are the biggest losers. I always feel those Roy contest jeans are probably the best denim I've ever owned. They looked great at every stage from new and glossy to old and knackered. I imagine he will be stocking up with as much as he possibly can but obviously that's a big cash outlay. I hope his long relationship with the company will help him get a good deal. Don't know how many people know this, but as i recall, Cone were one of Roy's first champions right from the start. He was making one-offs for them well before he started making jeans.
  4. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    Yes, the 1933 is Cone. Nearly everything is now. And no, they don't make the LVC fabric in any place other than Greensboro.
  5. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    (double post)
  6. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    You're right. It is more significant. I was just thinking of the bolts of fabric I have, some 1920s and the indigo duck. Too rare and precious to use now.
  7. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    It was Kaihara who made the denim for the very first Levi's vintage repros, from Levi's Japan I think, and as folk here will know they've made just about all the Sanforized fabric. Kurabo also made a lot of the earlier pre-1922 fabric before Levi's researched the earlier fabrics with Cone. Yes, as others have said, Cone's heritage was a key reason to buy LVC, after they closed Valencia Street. Levi's are actually experiencing quite a boom in the US; the new people have really turned the business around. But I don't think they'd risk that for their little boutique range.
  8. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    It crossed my mind. But the word is that Levi's are trying to get super-efficient in order to go public; buying Cone's looms would mean spending millions, more likely tens of millions, for a range which provides credibility but doesn't turn a huge profit. I know Levi's people will be really, really upset, as they've been such long term partners. But as I mentioned, Kaihara have researched all those fabrics already and had a long-term relationship with LVC so given the time frame, I think they'll simply switch to them. Sadly.
  9. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    Such awful, awful news. A good number of those people are my friends. A part of me thinks someone must buy those 30-odd looms and take the staff on. With these businesses it's always the overhead and pensions that kill them. I think it's a big deal for LVC, as Cone has always supplied that extra American-made cachet. But they've been prepared for Cone going bust for at least a decade; they had alternative fabrics sourced from Kaihara for years now. there's a good chance I'll lose $1k from this as I have a story scheduled for which I flew out to Tennessee last month. But i"m much sadder about the loss of the company and the knock-on effect for other people I know.
  10. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    those 1890s are beautiful, but they are synthetic indigo, like the triple pleat, a new fabric developed recently, specially for them I believe. The 1880s were the first time natural indigo was used since the Kurabo version. That denim does look like natural indigo but it's obviously different from the new fabric, which is quite a lot more purple. I actually have raw and scraped samples of the 1880 fabric, which I've added below. On the left is the (soaked) 1890 fabric next to the (raw) 1880 natural indigo. Next are two samples of the new natural indigo, raw, and scraped. finally, the scraped/distressed new fabric next to a vintage swatch found by Mike Harris. I know that when designing the yarns they thought this was the craziest thing they'd ever made. Fascinating to see it next to an original (we don't really know how old that swatch is or whether it's definitely Levi's but it's probably pre 1900, definitely natural indigo and is a good comparison). It looks pretty close to me. I do remember the Kurabo natural indigo had a tinted ecru fill yarn; if they'd used that here it would be pretty much indistinguishable, but whether the original cotton was that colour before it was left in a mine shaft for 130 years is another question.
  11. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    Is there a 1890 natural indigo in addition to the 1880? Btw... just for a distraction, this is the indigo used for the 1880 out in the field, around 6am. Mosquitos not pictured. The bumps have more or less gone now.
  12. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    Good advice from Maynard, as ever. Worth adding, tho, I do know that the current LVC designer has been making a concerted effort on the patterns so that the sizing is accurate throughout the range, and it would be logical if that were the case with the 1915, as it has been revised with the new fabric. I should add also that the new designer, Paul O'Neill, tends to wear the stuff (not sure if his predecessor does) and does seem to sweat the detail. unfortunately I don't know the new people at Cinch too well, in the old days I could go in and get measurements for all the jeans, can't really do that now, it's always obvious you're asking for a friend who's going to order on-line!
  13. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    here you have the 1890, the 1901, and the 1922 201 all in order, plus a lap pic of the 201. The 1890 I'm still working on. They've been my main summer jeans for perhaps the last five years. They are great to mooch around in in sandals. I think they'll end up with as dramatic fades as the 1901, but a much greener cast overall. You can't really see from the flat pix but these are disticntly less baggy than the 1901, which are in turn distinctly less baggy than the 201. Maynard's right about the cinch. On each of them, I swapped the buckle ( I only had one so I think it went from one pair to the other). The 201 hardware is different and gave me no problems. I didn't mention the 1880s; I had the first Kurabo natural indigo version but I bought too big, and ruined them by trying to shrink. You always need your actual waist size on these. On the upcoming TCB contest I have down-sized on the waist in the hope that they're proportioned much like the orginals, and it will be fascinating to wear in a Japanese take on this look. The Roy contest jeans, some here might know, have a related yarn to the old 1915 - and that's perhaps the best Cone fabric I've ever worn, and for me is better than any Japanese fabric I can think of off-hand, as it looks great at every stage; new, barely crocked, obviously worn, and knackered. The new version is lighter in weight but I don't know if it's the same warp yarn, but my guess is it will be great. All the front pockets are shagged, you can probably see. More significantly, these fade so differently to other jeans; fewer whiskers and honeycombs, instead you get fades over the pocket bags and on the thighs. Which I really like. Faded areas come out very green - although it is complicated by the fact that these are, to be frank, pretty dirty.
  14. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    Re the 'dad' 1937. I am certain that if you worked them hard, they'd look at least as good as the jeans below. I recall it's one of Allen Little, the yarn designer's, favourtie fabrics alongside the 1955 and 1915. here's some - literally - quick and dirty pix of my main cinch Levi's. 1901 top left; 1922 201 right; 1890 botttom. These are all the older Kurabo versions, so only give a rough approximation of how the new versions look. But from what I've seen, they are going for the same look with the Cone fabrics, as obviously they're based on the same originals. I've also added a pic of one new Cone fabric, from the 3-pleat jacket, which I think is the same as the 1880 (and maybe 1890) synthetic indigo jean. Very green. Note how the fabric is very open with lots of weft showing. Again, it's hard to wear in. For all these jeans except the 201, I would wear them for maybe three months in the summer. If you wear them, waiting for them to wear in, it will never happen. The 201 I wore in more regular style, and this is probably 9-12 months wear. Looking at them again, I think it's incredibly beautiful fabric, real greens in the mid tones, they are fabulous jeans. You can see the same greeny colour in the 1890, too, while the 1901 is a much blacker colour.
  15. Levi's Vintage Clothing

    I have actually worn all of these bar the 1915 and 1937. I don't know the new 1915, but the old ones were terrific. That would still be a strong contender for the best, as I think the new fabric is good. But I do love the 1901. With all of the earlier ones, especially, you have to resign yourself to a ridiculously long wear-in process. 1880 - great, unusual shape. Still jonesing for the natural indigo version 1890 - lovely drainpipe cut. Mine are 10 years old, worn maybe 6 summer and still only just starting to wear in. One back pocket is a pain as the front pockets are shallow and money drops out. New Cone fabric for these looks terrific. Perfect for the beach. 1901 - great all-rounder. 1915 - good rep but I haven't worn 1922 201 - the old Kurabo fabric was amazing, very natural -indigo like, as in very turquoise with lots of greeny midtones and a bastard to wear in. Very wide, almost sailor-pants like. 1933 - somehow my least favourtie LVC, mostly on account of the fabric which I found too baby blue; although I did wear these as a new parent and hence had to wash a lot due to baby sick (and worse) 1937 - good fabric and a good cut means these have to be some of the most enticing cinchback models.